Growth of the Soil

fiction by Knut Hamsun


Knut Hamsun (4 août 1859 - 19 février 1952) était un écrivain norvégien qui a reçu le prix Nobel de littérature en 1920. L'œuvre de Hamsun s'étend sur plus de 70 ans et montre des variations en ce qui concerne la conscience, le sujet, la perspective et l'environnement. Il a publié plus de 20 romans, un recueil de poésie, quelques nouvelles et pièces de théâtre, un récit de voyage, des ouvrages de non-fiction et quelques essais.

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ReadGeek really blew it predicting I would give this book a 10. The book, like its main character is pedestrian. It portrays the lives of a man and woman homesteading in the northern wastes of Norway in the late nineteenth century. The couple are uncommunicative and tend to speak in short sentences. The plot focuses on actions and, secondarily, the few words spoken. Nothing is revealed about the interior lives of these characters, and they are portrayed as intelligent animals who mainly live and act and rarely take time to reflect deeply on anything. The author seems to have been a fanatical Nazi sympathizer, even well after world war II, which is surely odd. I cannot understand what anyone sees in this book, beyond its historical interest as a presumably well-researched history of the settlement of the Norwegian wilderness in the 19th century.

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